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AWS Gets New Channel Chief from Cisco

Meantime, another high-profile channel leader is leaving AWS.

Kelly Teal

November 22, 2021

2 Min Read
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Amazon Web Services (AWS) has named Ruba Borno as its replacement for channel chief Doug Yeum.

Borno, a Cisco veteran, will take over as vice president of worldwide channels and alliances at AWS on Dec. 6. That marks Yeum’s last day as channel head, and Borna’s first. Yeum still will deliver his keynote speech at AWS re:Invent and will introduce Borno to the partner community.

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AWS’ Ruba Borno

Borno comes to AWS from Cisco, where she has served as senior vice president and general manager of customer experience centers and managed services for almost seven years. Prior to that, she worked as vice president and general manager for Cisco’s managed services unit. Before that, Borno led growth initiatives as chief of staff to Cisco’s CEO. Nov. 22 marks Borno’s official first day at AWS. She will spend the next two weeks shadowing Yeum, who is departing for a role in Amazon’s retail business.

Here’s our list of channel people on the move in October.

Borno’s experience in managed services should lend itself well to strategizing approaches for partners. And that AWS has named a woman in such a high-profile role speaks well to the company’s recent efforts to improve its diversity, equity and inclusion.

Meantime, Channel Futures has learned that Sandy Carter, vice president of worldwide public sector partners and programs, is leaving AWS. She has agreed to work for a startup, the name of which Channel Futures does not yet know. Jeffrey Kratz, who has worked in the AWS public sector group for nine years, will replace Carter.

Jay McBain, principal analyst — channels, partnerships and ecosystem, at Forrester, said the Borno and Carter news is significant.

“This is a great addition of talent to [AWS’] channel team,” he told Channel Futures of Borno’s appointment.

But, he has some reservations.

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Forrester’s Jay McBain

“With Sandy leaving and Ruba not exactly coming from the partner-facing side of Cisco, I am little bit worried about learning on the job while their two competitors are outgrowing them every quarter inside the pandemic (by a relatively large margin),” he said.

Also, McBain repeated his admonition that AWS give its new channel head some freedom to interface with partners.

“I mentioned this last week about Doug Yeum – while he was able to successfully centralize the program and bring together over 120,000 partners under one umbrella, he never really engaged the channel outside of carefully scripted AWS internal events – missing an opportunity,” McBain said.

About the Author(s)

Kelly Teal

Contributing Editor, Channel Futures

Kelly Teal has more than 20 years’ experience as a journalist, editor and analyst, with longtime expertise in the indirect channel. She worked on the Channel Partners magazine staff for 11 years. Kelly now is principal of Kreativ Energy LLC.

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